Friday, March 23, 2012

Slowly turning Korean; Clothes, Hair, and Smile

It's been a quite hectic week with homework and quizzes but I finally managed to squeeze in some time to blog. I haven't really had anything too exciting, besides my daily meals and small talk with my Korean/exchange friends; but I'm starting to notice some changes. I think I'm slowly turning Korean.

I'm paired up with a student (a Korean national) for one of my school clubs and he recently helped me get a haircut. At first I was going to go into a random barbershop/salon and say "조금 만 짤라 주세요" which is essentially "Please just cut a little." But I realized that this was a bad idea because a little is like an inch over here. So my language exchange partner took me to 최가을헤어 which is a well known/really good salon in Korea. The salons here are AMAZING. While you wait you are provided with a beverage of coffee, tea, or juice, they wash your hair (TWICE) and while they are drying and styling your hair, there's two people on each side and each person has their own dryer. The whole process was completely new to me. But I loved it. Oh and did I forget to mention that my friend just told me, "Trust her, she's good at cutting hair." He then went on to tell the salon lady to do whatever she wanted with my hair (which was hard to work with, being American and all).

Another thing that changed is school pride. All Yonsei students get a letter man/varsity jacket (something you would never get in Hawaii, even if you were in Varsity). It's amazing to see how much students wear their jackets in school and around Sinchon. Now I finally have one of my own!

Normally students engrave their major or a saying. The best part is that engraving is only $3! 

And last but not least is how you smile. I learned that in Korea most people don't smile with their teeth like back in America. They sometimes do, if they're flawless actors or models, but it's not common at all to smile with your teeth. I remember when I was little my grandmother would never smile with her teeth...maybe she had the same mindset and maybe it's a similar concept in China. Hmm...

Me with my Korean haircut and my first Korean smile picture with my friend 정아


  1. yonsei letterman jackets are free? tell me this is true! hahaha

    1. Ah, sorry to burst your bubble, but the letterman jackets are not free =/